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salt marsh

Joined 1 year, 3 months ago

it's me, I'm the creator and admin of BookWyrm

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salt marsh's books

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2022 Reading Goal

7% complete! salt marsh has read 4 of 52 books.

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The Sumerians (Paperback, 1971, University Of Chicago Press) No rating

A depiction of the Sumerian civilization in ancient Mesopotamia based on excavated literary tablets. Describes …

... near the very beginning of the document, one of these worthies addresses the other as follows:

You dolt, numbskull, school pest, you illiterate, you Sumerian ignoramus, your hand is terrible; it cannot even hold the stylus properly; it is unfit for writing and cannot take dictation. (And yet you say) you are a scribe like me.

To this the other worthy answers:

What do you mean I am not a scribe like you? When you write a document it makes no sense. When you write a letter it is illegible. You go to divide up an estate, but are unable to divide up the estate. For when you go to survey the field, you can't hold the measuring line. You can't hold a nail in your hand; you have no sense. You don't know how to arbitrate between contesting parties; you aggravate the struggle between brothers. You are one of the most incompetent of tablet writers. What are you fit for, can any one say?

The Sumerians by  (Page 241)

"you Sumerian ignoramus" is perhaps the greatest insult I have ever read, just an incredible document of diss tracks from antiquity

The Witness for the Dead (2021, Tor Books) 4 stars

A standalone novel in the fantastic world of Katherine Addison's award-winning The Goblin Emperor.

When …

a beautiful world to exist in

4 stars

This was one of those books that when it ended, I missed getting to be in the world. It has a kind of understated, slice-of-life feel, with a lot of detail and reverence paid to the minutia of daily life and community relationships, that felt more prominent to me than the murder mysteries. Addison writes with an immense amout of compassion and tenderness, and for me that is what makes this book, and The Goblin Emperor, transcend what they would be on their face, in terms of plot.

The writing style drops you into the cultural nuances of the society largely without explanation, and you can infer, for example, what different honorifics mean through context. I really really like this and I think overall its very well done, but I think it would be more daunting if I hadn't already read The Goblin Emperor, and there were some …